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archives: the column of lasting insignificance
by John Wilcock

2014
October 18, 2014
October 11, 2014
October 4, 2014
September 27, 2014
September 20, 2014
September 13, 2014
September 6, 2014
August 30, 2014
August 23, 2014
August 16, 2014
August 9, 2014
August 2, 2014
July 26, 2014
July 19, 2014
July 12, 2014
July 5, 2014
June 28, 2014
June 21, 2014
June 14, 2014
June 7, 2014
May 31, 2014
May 24, 2014
May 17, 2014
May 10, 2014
May 3, 2014
April 26, 2014
April 19, 2014
April 12, 2014
April 5, 2014
March 29, 2014
March 22, 2014
March 15, 2014
March 8, 2014
March 1, 2014
February 22, 2014
February 15, 2014
February 8, 2014
February 1, 2014
January 25, 2014
January 18, 2014
January 11, 2014
January 4, 2014

2013
December 28, 2013
December 21, 2013
December 14, 2013
December 7, 2013
November 30, 2013
November 23, 2013
November 16, 2013
November 9, 2013
November 2, 2013
October 26, 2013
October 19, 2013
October 12, 2013
October 5, 2013
September 28, 2013
September 21, 2013
September 14, 2013
September 7, 2013
August 31, 2013
August 24, 2013
August 17, 2013
August 10, 2013
August 3, 2013
July 27, 2013
July 20, 2013
July 13, 2013
July 6, 2013
June 29, 2013
June 22, 2013
June 15, 2013
June 8, 2013
June 1, 2013
May 25, 2013
May 18, 2013
May 11, 2013
May 4, 2013
April 27, 2013
April 20, 2013
April 13, 2013
April 6, 2013
March 30, 2013
March 23, 2013
March 16, 2013
March 9, 2013
March 2, 2013
February 23, 2013
February 16, 2013
February 9, 2013
February 2, 2013
January 26, 2013
January 19, 2013
January 12, 2013
January 5, 2013

2012
December 29, 2012
December 22, 2012
December 15, 2012
December 8, 2012
December 1, 2012
November 24, 2012
November 17, 2012
November 10, 2012
November 3, 2012
October 27, 2012
October 20, 2012
October 13, 2012
October 6, 2012
September 29, 2012
September 22, 2012
September 15, 2012
September 8, 2012
September 1, 2012
August 25, 2012
August 18, 2012
August 11, 2012
August 4, 2012
July 28, 2012
July 21, 2012
July 14, 2012
July 7, 2012
June 30, 2012
June 23, 2012
June 16, 2012
June 9, 2012
June 2, 2012
May 26, 2012
May 19, 2012
May 12, 2012
May 5, 2012
April 28, 2012
April 21, 2012
April 14, 2012
April 7, 2012
March 31, 2012
March 24, 2012
March 17, 2012
March 10, 2012
March 3, 2012
February 25, 2012
February 18, 2012
February 11, 2012
February 4, 2012
January 28 2012
January 21 2012
January 14, 2012
January 7, 2012

2011
December 31, 2011
December 24, 2011
December 17, 2011
December 10, 2011
December 3, 2011
November 26, 2011
November 19, 2011
November 12, 2011
November 5, 2011
October 29, 2011
October 22, 2011
October 15, 2011
October 8, 2011
October 2, 2011
September 24, 2011
September 17, 2011
September 10, 2011
September 3, 2011
August 27, 2011
August 20, 2011
August 13, 2011
August 6, 2011
July 30, 2011
July 23, 2011
July 16, 2011
July 9, 2011
July 2, 2011
June 25, 2011
June 18, 2011
June 11, 2011
June 4, 2011
May 28, 2011
May 21, 2011
May 14, 2011
May 7, 2011
April 30, 2011
April 23, 2011
April 16, 2011
April 9, 2011
April 2, 2011
March 26, 2011
March 19, 2011
March 12, 2011
March 5, 2011
February 26, 2011
February 19, 2011
February 12, 2011
February 5, 2011
January 29, 2011
January 22, 2011
January 15, 2011
January 6, 2011

2010
December 25, 2010
December 18, 2010
December 11, 2010
December 4, 2010
November 27, 2010
November 20, 2010
November 13, 2010
November 6, 2010
October 30, 2010
October 23, 2010
October 16, 2010
October 9, 2010
October 2, 2010
September 25, 2010
September 18, 2010
September 11, 2010
September 4, 2010
August 28, 2010
August 21, 2010
August 14, 2010
August 7, 2010
July 31, 2010
July 24, 2010
July 17, 2010
July 10, 2010
July 3, 2010
June 26, 2010
June 19, 2010
June 12, 2010
June 5, 2010
May 29, 2010
May 22, 2010
May 15, 2010
May 8, 2010
May 1, 2010
April 24, 2010
April 17, 2010
April 10, 2010
April 3, 2010
March 27, 2010
March 20, 2010
March 13, 2010
March 6, 2010
February 27, 2010
February 20, 2010
February 13, 2010
February 6, 2010
January 30, 2010
January 23, 2010
January 16, 2010
January 9, 2010
January 2, 2010

2009
December 26, 2009
December 19, 2009
December 12, 2009
December 5, 2009
November 28, 2009
November 21, 2009
November 14, 2009
November 7, 2009
October 31, 2009
October 24, 2009
October 17, 2009
October 10, 2009
October 3, 2009
September 26, 2009
September 19, 2009
September 12, 2009
September 5, 2009
August 29, 2009
August 22, 2009
August 15, 2009
August 8, 2009
August 1, 2009
July 25, 2009
July 18, 2009
July 11, 2009
July 4, 2009
June 27, 2009
June 20, 2009
June 13, 2009
June 6, 2009
May 30, 2009
May 23, 2009
May 16, 2009
May 9, 2009
May 2, 2009
April 25, 2009
April 18, 2009
April 11, 2009
April 4, 2009
March 28, 2009
March 21, 2009
March 14, 2009
March 7, 2009
February 28, 2009
February 21, 2009
February 14, 2009
February 7, 2009
January 31, 2009
January 24, 2009
January 17, 2009
January 3, 2009

2008
December 27, 2008
December 20, 2008
December 13, 2008
December 6, 2008
November 29, 2008
November 22, 2008
November 15, 2008
November 8, 2008
November 5, 2008
November 1, 2008
October 25, 2008
October 18, 2008
October 11, 2008
October 4, 2008
September 27, 2008
September 20, 2008
September 13, 2008
September 6, 2008
August 30, 2008
August 23, 2008
August 16, 2008
August 9, 2008
August 2, 2008
July 26, 2008
July 19, 2008
July 12, 2008
July 5, 2008
June 28, 2008
June 21, 2008
June 14, 2008
June 7, 2008
May 31, 2008
May 24, 2008
May 17, 2008
May 10, 2008
May 3, 2008
April 26, 2008
April 19, 2008
April 12, 2008
April 5, 2008
March 29, 2008
March 22, 2008
March 15, 2008
March 8, 2008
March 1, 2008
February 23, 2008
February 16, 2008
February 9, 2008
February 2, 2008
January 26, 2008
January 19, 2008
January 12, 2008
January 5, 2008

2007
December 29, 2007
December 22, 2007
December 15, 2007
December 8, 2007
December 1, 2007
November 24, 2007
November 17, 2007
November 10, 2007
November 3, 2007
October 27, 2007
October 20, 2007
October 13, 2007
October 6, 2007
September 29, 2007
September 22, 2007
September 15, 2007
September 8, 2007
September 1, 2007
August 25, 2007
August 18, 2007
August 11, 2007
August 4, 2007
July 28, 2007
July 21, 2007
July 14, 2007
July 7, 2007
June 30, 2007
June 23, 2007
June 16, 2007
June 9, 2007
June 2, 2007
May 19, 2007
May 12, 2007
May 5, 2007
April 28, 2007
April 21, 2007
April 14, 2007
April 7, 2007
March 31, 2007
March 24, 2007
March 17, 2007
March 10, 2007
March 3, 2007
February 24, 2007
February 17, 2007
February 10, 2007
February 3, 2007
January 20, 2007
January 13, 2007
January 6, 2007

2006
December 30, 2006
December 23, 2006
December 16, 2006
December 9, 2006
December 2, 2006
November 25, 2006
November 18, 2006
November 11, 2006
November 4, 2006
October 28, 2006
October 21, 2006
October 14, 2006
October 7, 2006
September 30, 2006
September 23, 2006
September 16, 2006
September 9, 2006
September 2, 2006
August 26, 2006
August 19, 2006
August 12, 2006
August 5, 2006
July 29, 2006
July 22, 2006
July 15, 2006

recent columns...

“The idea of waiting for something makes it more exciting.”
—Andy Warhol

Week of October 18, 2014

“I suppose I have a really loose interpretation of 'work,' because I think that just being alive is so much work at something you don't always want to do. The machinery is always going. Even when you sleep.”
—Andy Warhol

Week of October 11, 2014

“I try to stay in a constant state of confusion just because of the expression it leaves on my face.”
—Johnny Depp

Week of October 4, 2014

“During the 1960s, I think, people forgot what emotions were supposed to be. And I don't think they've ever remembered.”
—Andy Warhol

Week of September 27, 2014

“The two most engaging powers of an author are to make new things familiar, familiar things new.”
—William Makepeace Thackeray

Week of September 20, 2014

“And when suddenly the god stopped her and, with anguish in his cry, uttered the words: ‘He has turned round’ — she comprehended nothing and said softly: ‘Who?’ ”
—Rainer Marie Rilke

Week of September 13, 2014

“The free soul is rare, but you know it when you see it - basically because you feel good, very good, when you are near or with them.”
—Charles Bukowski

Week of September 6, 2014

“A journey is a person in itself; no two are alike. And all plans, safeguards, policing, and coercion are fruitless. We find that after years of struggle that we do not take a trip; a trip takes us. ”
—John Steinbeck

Week of August 30, 2014

“We're blind to our blindness. We have very little idea of how little we know. We're not designed to know how little we know.”
—Daniel Kahneman

Week of August 23, 2014

“There are three hundred and sixty-four days when you might get un-birthday presents, and only one for birthday presents, you know.”
—Lewis Carroll

Week of August 16, 2014

“Only a few find the way, some don't recognize it when they do—some… don't ever want to.”
—The Cheshire Cat

Week of August 9, 2014

“I wonder if I've been changed in the night. Let me think. Was I the same when I got up this morning?”
—Lewis Carrol from Alice in Wonderland

Week of August 2, 2014

“The Death of Marilyn Monroe (and George Whitman's Girlfriends)”
—A comic by Ethan Persoff and Scott Marshall

Week of July 26, 2014

“Living is easy with eyes closed”
—John Lennon

Week of July 19, 2014

If I had a world of my own, everything would be nonsense.
Nothing would be what it is, because everything would be what it isn't ...
—Alice

Week of July 12, 2014

Wait-a-Minute: Seeking the Tranquility of Everyday Life along the Yangtze River in China
Week of July 5, 2014

John Wilcock: New York Years—Writing the Book "Mexico on 5 Dollars a Day" (Part One)
Week of June 28, 2014

John Wilcock: New York Years—Tips on Smuggling Pot into the United States
Week of June 21, 2014

Dear Readers, as I address you this summer, I am unable to write...
Week of June 14, 2014

LSD History: Michael Hollingshead Turns on the World
Week of June 7, 2014

Sneaking Julie Bovasso into McSorley's 'Men's Only' Saloon in 1961
Week of May 31, 2014

“The story of life is quicker than the blink of an eye, the story of love is hello, goodbye. ”
—Jimi Hendrix

Week of May 24, 2014

“Every man is said to have his peculiar ambition. Whether it be true or not, I can say for one that I have no other so great as that of being truly esteemed of my fellow men, by rendering myself worthy of their esteem. How far I shall succeed in gratifying this ambition, is yet to be developed.”
—Abraham Lincoln

Week of May 17, 2014

“They always say time changes things, but you actually have to change them yourself.”
—Andy Warhol

Week of May 10, 2014

Save the world—with Quinoa?; Silence isn't…; Chelsea—heir apparent to the Clinton Foundation; Junk Science is…; the Smell of York; and of course, the Wilcock Web...
Week of May 3, 2014

Bernie Sanders for Prez?; The Working Families Party—hatching movements one organization at a time; penny pot stocks—not without obvious risk; tall timber building—9 story apartment complex in East London employs 'plywood on steroids'; The Philosopher's Mail—populist news outlet alive to traditional philosophical virtues; Casinos know when to fold ‘em; and of course, the Wilcock Web...
Week of April 26, 2014

Breaking up is hard to do…; Kasparov vs. Putin--some pretty crushing moves; Your sex life on drugs…; 'Sawbucked to Death' by Will Durst; Right-wing support for a healthy minimum wage?; A novel 'convenient store'; Jacob Zuma--anything but presidential material, and he'll likely stay in power; estilo gángster pizzería en España; and of course, the Wilcock Web...
Week of April 19, 2014

'Everybody is assumed to be an ally…'; from the archives
Week of April 12, 2014

The Kessler Syndrome—one huge traffic accident in space just waiting to happen; Dominique Strauss-Kahn—on forcing his way…; running the FCC with your hands tied behind your back; Black Tie or Tie-die?; Bill Gates the optimist; Mum's the word from the NRA regarding alarming gun owner behavior research; and of course, the Wilcock Web...
Week of April 5, 2014

Washington lobbyists—unless they say they're not…; groin rivalry?; Phillip Roth on the need to write; move over Fox TV; voter demographics by choice of booze; that 'wasted' space at the bottom of every page of the NYT; and of course, the Wilcock Web...
Week of March 29, 2014

Old friends will be aware that I published a tabloid underground newspaper in Manhattan in the '60s called Other Scenes, and although I have only a handful of these myself, I occasionally see others offered for sale on various websites....
Week of March 22, 2014

- column archives: 2006 - present



in the press...

March 15, 2012

John Wilcock: The Puppet Master of '60s Underground Newspapers
the Atlantic

The East Village Other


A conversation with the man who co-founded The Village Voice and wrote the first biography of Andy Warhol.

(read more)


March 15, 2012

The East Village Other


Who Was Who

Biographical sketches of personalities and links to information about those whose presence or participation made the East Village Other what it was.

(read more)



Wednesday,
October 27, 2010

A Budget Travel Pioneer on a Time When $5 a Day Was Real (Frugal) Money
nytimes.com: Frugal Traveler

by Seth Kugel
John Wilcock at the New York Times

It was the first handwritten letter I’d received in 5 years. Or maybe 10. Signed by John Wilcock, a man I’d never heard of, and postmarked Ojai, Calif., it was waiting for me when I returned from my São Paulo-to-New York summer trip. Mr. Wilcock wrote that he had been an assistant editor at The Times Travel section back in the 1950s, and had written the first editions of “Mexico on $5 a Day,” “Greece on $5 a Day” and “Japan on $5 a Day” for Arthur Frommer in the 1960s.

By George, I thought. This man was the original Frugal Traveler.

(read more)



Manhattan MemoriesManhattan Memories
An Autobiography
by John Wilcock

"A GOOD WAY to describe John Wilcock is to say that he is a talented bohemian counter-culture journalist who once played a major role in the emergence of America’s underground press. Born 1927 in Sheffield, England, he left school aged 16 to work on various newspapers in England, and on Toronto periodicals before moving to New York City. There in 1955 he became one of the five founders of the Village Voice in which he and co-founder Norman Mailer wrote weekly columns. Wilcock called his column “The Village Square”, an intended pun. He and young Mailer were not quite friends, although Wilcock was at times annoyed, but always amused, by Mailer’s monstrous ego."

-From the preface of Manhattan Memories, by Martin Gardner



The Autobiography and Sex Life of Andy Warhol

The Autobiography and Sex Life of AndyWarhol
by John Wilcock
Edited by Christopher Trela
Photographs by Shunk-Kender


Village Voice and Interview cofounder John Wilcock was first drawn into the milieu of Andy Warhol through film-maker Jonas Mekas, assisting on some of Warhol’s early films, hanging out at his parties and quickly becoming a regular at the Factory. “About six months after I started hanging out at the old, silvery Factory onWest 47th Street,” he recalls, “[Gerard] Malanga came up to me and asked, ‘When are you going to write something about us?’” Already fascinated by Warhol’s persona, Wilcock went to work, interviewing the artist’s closest associates, supporters and superstars. Among these were Malanga, Naomi Levine, Taylor Mead and Ultra Violet, all of whom had been in the earliest films; scriptwriter Ronnie Tavel, and photographer Gretchen Berg; art dealers Sam Green, Ivan Karp, Eleanor Ward and Leo Castelli, and the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Henry Geldzahler; the poets Charles Henri Ford and Taylor Mead, and the artist Marisol; and the musicians Lou Reed and Nico. Paul Morrisey supplied the title: The Autobiography and Sex Life of AndyWarhol was the first oral biography of the artist. First published in 1971, and pitched against the colorful backdrop of the 1960s, it assembles a prismatic portrait of one of modern art’s least knowable artists during the early years of his fame. The Autobiography and Sex Life is likely the most revealing portrait of Warhol, being composite instead of singular; each of its interviewees offers a piece of the puzzle that was Andy Warhol. This new edition corrects the many errors of the first, and is beautifully designed in a bright, Warholian palette with numerous illustrations. The British-born writer John Wilcock co-founded The Village Voice in 1955, and went on to edit seminal publications such as The East Village Other, Los Angeles Free Press, Other Scenes and (in 1970) Interview, with Andy Warhol.